2 appointed to Ironton health board

Published 9:30 am Saturday, June 2, 2018

City employees fill position during merger

At Thursday’s special meeting of the Ironton City Council, two people were appointed to the Ironton Board of Health, so the board has enough people to conduct business for the board during its merger with the Lawrence County Board of Health.

Mayor Katrina Keith asked for the appointments of Mark Dickess and Missy Schreck for a one-year term to close out any business as necessary.

The appointments were needed after two board members, Jennifer Willis and TJ Young, quit in protest after the May 10 meeting when city council voted unanimously to merge the Ironton Health Department with the Lawrence County Health Department.

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Dickess and Schreck are city employees and Keith got clarification that they could serve on the board from the council’s attorney that it was legal.

“He said because they are not in positions of authority (like council members) are with funds, that these appointments would be fine,” she said.

Councilman Chuck O’Leary said because he would support the appointment of the city employees only because it was a temporary position.

“For a regular board appointment, I would never support a city employee being on there, because you have authority over them,” he told the mayor.

Dr. Steve Merkel was in attendance and repeated that he would not resign from the board until the merger is completed. The other members of the board are Scott Evans and Eddie Holmes.

The council approved the appointments.

It is estimated that the merger could be completed within the next two months. The Ironton Health Department would continue their services until the merger is completed.

The second part of the meeting was discussing creating a survey to ask city residents what they would support when it comes to raising more revenue for the city budget.

“We need to find out what the pleasure of the committee is moving forward,” explained councilman Jim Tordiff. “The city is strapped for funds and in dire need of creating a revenue stream, if the city wants to be progressive. I’m talking about things like economic development, paving streets, more policemen, recreation and the list goes on and on.”

Once the questions are decided upon, the council will put a survey up on a website.